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The Half Life of Timofey Berezin
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Reviews & Ratings for
Pu-239 More at IMDbPro »The Half Life of Timofey Berezin (original title)

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Sad story with many funny moments

7/10
Author: Indyrod from United States
24 September 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Interesting movie, taking place in a secret city in Russia with a nuclear facility, and an accident which inflicts a worker (Paddy Considine) with a massive dose of radiation. After he gets fired without pay, he manages to steal some plutonium and sets out to sell it on Moscow's black market with the help of an incompetent criminal. His plan goes very wrong as his body gets worse and worse, and the deal he was trying to make to send the money home to his Wife (Radha Mitchell) ends up with a rather humorous note as some thugs think it's coke and snort it. The movie is in no way a comedy, but the incompetent Russian mob guys give it some rather funny moments.

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Funny and so Serious

6/10
Author: patigerjet
21 May 2008

From most of the prior comments the movie definitely has some positive elements about it including 100 grams of snort-able weapons grade Plutonium. Personally I expected little from a movie named after an atomic element but was surprised to find it a bit engrossing. Some found the dual story lines of the sickened nuclear factory worker and the Russian mobsters to be a bit too much. I found the narrative switches to be entertaining. With Timofey, the "glowing" and disgruntled plant worker, there is the heavy but poetic monologues of particles and light waves, a rather clever analogy of his crumbling life and his love for his family with basic nuclear physics. While most of the bungling Russian mafia characters and scenes were rather entertaining. Shiv, a fast talking bottom feeding street mobster, is a pathetic character that you almost can almost sympathize with. Shiv's attempt on teaching life's lessons to his young son while riding down a mall escalator was a funny nuance moment that starts with a Jesse James story and morphs into a confused connection with Jesse Jackson, Micheal Jackson, the Jackson 5, and finally Andrew Jackson. That somewhat hilarious scene itself is enough to lighten up the movie but then there also the comical street address confusion of "7" with "1" incident. Top that of with character Tusk's amusing little mafia business lecture to Shiv and his cohorts, which feels like a cheap late night infomercial testimony, and the movie could be considered a dark comedy with heavy elements...literally.

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5 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Disappointing blend of tragedy & slapstick

3/10
Author: wcf2302 from rehoboth beach, de
23 June 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

There were 2 possibly-good movies in there, but the filmmakers unwisely chose to combine them into a whole that is much less than the sum of its parts. The tragic plight of the nuclear worker and his family should have been in a different movie from the hilarious criminal enterprises of the Russian thugs. And poor Shiv-- bouncing between them-- I didn't know whether to laugh or cry during his scenes. I half-expected the gun at the end to fire a BANG sign. 3 stars for the acting of the nuclear worker, his wife, and the Mutt and Jeff thugs, but minus 7 stars for putting them in the same film. What a disappointment. Shame on HBO.

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1 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

The victory of the English language.

3/10
Author: hersh-mail from Planet Earth
3 August 2008

In 2008, this just doesn't cut it. A whole movie taking place in a foreign country, in this case in Russia, in which *everybody* are supposed to be Russians, and during the whole freaking film they're talking to each other in English, and this with a "russian" accent so thick it's at times hard to make out what the lines are. No, no, no. This is an insult in every imaginable level. In most Hollywood crap they at least have the oh-so-clever excuse to include an American hero in the mix with whom everybody thus has to communicate in English. But even then, and this in most of the movies, when amongst other fellow country-men, they speak in their respective language. In Europe they have the habit of dubbing the movies for those that wish to escape the subtitles, but it's up to the spectator to choose which version to see (or hear). Not so here. I was trying to figure out why they spoke English for a good 20 minutes into the film, telling myself that there has to be some clever reason for it, only to finally realize that it was purely out of stupidity, arrogance and probably for some unclear commercial reasoning. The problem is that after that nothing matters. This is not serious. In fact i'm thinking it's a hoax. At one point i was certain that it's a parody, a big joke for those who can get past the third grade pseudo-thriller that seemed to be playing. But even then, i didn't laugh enough for it to be a good one. No, for the most time i was just shaking my head in wonder and desolation while asking myself if i was not being laughed at by the film maker. I strongly advice against, this is just stupid. Everybody in the world do not need English speak...

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